Weight Gain and Pregnancy

Understanding how to avoid weight gain on birth control is one thing that just about any woman who uses certain contraceptives wants to do. There are many forms of chemical contraception that have the potential of gaining weight as one of their side effects. Of course, effective birth control is important so going off of it just to lose weight isn’t really a viable option.

The first thing you should do if you have noticed you are putting on weight too quickly is to talk to your doctor. She will be able to see if it’s the contraception causing the problem, or if there is another underlying health issue that needs to be addressed. If it’s the contraception, she may decide that a different prescription would be the best thing to get rid of some weight.

One of the causes of weight gain from birth control pills is that they contain estrogen. Estrogen can make you weigh more by causing you to retain water. Therefore, your doctor may be able to prescribe birth control that has lower levels of estrogen, and that should help you to lose some weight. She will also be able to discuss other birth control options if your weight is a concern.

If you like the birth control you are currently using, then there are a few other things you can do to avoid gaining weight.

Hydration – Even though it seems that the estrogen in some contraceptives can cause you to retain water, it’s still important to make sure that you are drinking enough water every day. Your body will only retain so much and then eliminate the rest, but if you try to decrease your water intake then your body will do its best to store every drop it takes in.

Diet – Eating healthier foods that are also low in calories is a great way to lose weight. A good rule of thumb is to eat foods that are as close to their natural state as possible. For example, frozen corn is a better choice than deep-fried and salted corn chips. Try to focus on whole grains, fruits and vegetables, lean meat, low-fat dairy and healthy fats. Avoid salt, which causes water retention. Be sure to check your prescription to see if there are is any food or drink you should avoid.

Exercise – If you dislike the thought of “exercise” then don’t exercise. The truth is that you don’t have to. However, you do need to be physically active. Think of it as movement. Do things you enjoy, and enlist a friend to do it with you. Something as simple as a walk after dinner or working in the garden will burn off extra calories. Of course the more intense the movement, and the longer it lasts, the more calories you will burn.

As you can see, the question of how to avoid weight gain on birth control has several answers. The main thing is that you now have enough information to take action.

..that’s a very different patient than one who’s six-foot-1 and 200 pounds. So BMI takes into account not only the weight, but also your height. The question of how much weight is normal to gain during pregnancy.

..I think we’ve become much more refined in medicine now so that what’s normal for woman may not be normal for the other woman and what I mean by that is that I think we have pretty good data now suggesting that women who are obese probably don’t gain as much weight or should not gain as much weight as a woman who’s under her BMI.

.her appropriate BMI. So, it used to be thought “okay, 25-30 pounds was an appropriate weight gain during pregnancy,” but we’ve changed that now. We try to individualize our recommendations to patients.

So, typically if you are average weight, probably still 20 to 30 pounds, depending on everything else going on, is an appropriate weight gain. If you’re above your ideal body weight, probably that’s closer to 13 to 15 pounds.

And if you’re under your ideal body weight, that may be 30 to 35 pounds. So, I think it’s really important for patients to understand now that, the doctors understand too, that we should be equipped with really individualized recommendations about weight gain and talk about other commit morbidities that may lead into that decision of how much weight a woman should gain.

So, typically obesity is considered anything with a BMI greater than 29, so a BMI 30 and above is considered obese. Um, in some older studies I think they used to use the weight as a raw weight of 200 pounds but I think pretty much now everyone goes to BMI and we calculate BMI on all the patients that come to our center and when we find a BMI greater than 30 we do have a discussion with the patient.

Again, um, I think it is a very nice conversation because it can be a difficult conversation to have particularly with patients who maybe have been obese all their life and I’ve heard a lot of discussion about the weight but I think when you put in the context of the pregnancy basing that discussion that there are risks associated with obesity.

This is why I’m talking to you about it. I think patients receive it well. We try to be really, um, sensitive to the issue because again there’s a lot of… people are very sensitive about their weight.

But, it’s important because that allows us to take care of you during the pregnancy. We use the context of the obesity epidemic. We know that obese women are at increased risk of all perinatal outcomes.

We think about pre-term labor? Yes. We think about the risks of caesarean section? Yes. We think about the risk of what we call shoulder dystocia, a difficult vaginal delivery? Yes. We think about preeclampsia? Yes.

We think about gestational diabetes, even if they don’t have diabetes going into the pregnancy. All of these things are increased in the obese pregnant population. So, we try to start some interventions when ladies present to us.

We love it when they come pre-conceptually so we can actually start working on things that they can continue during the pregnancy and those things that I’m thinking about are dietary modification, exercise modification, in the context of yes, you’re going to be pregnant at some point so let’s start something that you can actually continue during the pregnancy.

I’m a big advocate of exercise in general. I was a big sports enthusiast growing up and I try to be a little bit now, and there’s no reason why it can’t be continued during a pregnancy. So, I just think education of the woman, of the reproductive age woman lends itself a long way in terms of pregnancy.

BMI is body mass index and that's a it's it's a more reliable way when we talk about this question of obesity than just play no weight because for a patient who's 5 foot 2 who weighs 200 pounds that's a very different agent who's 6 foot 1 and 200 pounds so BMI takes an account not only the weight but also a guy's a question of how much weight is normal to gain during pregnancy I think we become much more refined in medicine now so that what's normal for one woman may not be normal for the other woman woman and what I mean by that is that I think we have pretty good data now suggesting that women who are obese you know probably don't gain as much weight or should not gain as much weight as a woman who's under her BMI her appropriate BMI so it used to be thought okay 25 to 30 pounds was an appropriate weight gain during pregnancy but we've changed that now we try to individualize you know our recommendations to patients so typically if your average weight probably still 20 20 to 30 pounds depending on everything that's going on is appropriate weight gain if you're above your ideal body weight probably that's probably closer to 13 to 15 pounds and if you're under your ideal body weight then maybe 30 to 35 pounds so I think it's really important for patients understand now that doctors are in the doctor's to understand too that we should be equipped with really individualized recommendations about weight gain and talk about you know other commit morbidities that may lead into that decision how much weight a woman she came so typically obese VCS consider anything with a BMI greater than 29 so BMI 30 and above is considered obese in some older studies I think they used to use the weight as a raw weight of 200 pounds but I think pretty much now everyone goes to BMI and we calculate BMI on all the patients that come to our Center and when we find a BMI greater than 30 we do have a discussion with the patients again it's you know it's a very I think it is a very nice conversation because it can be a difficult conversation to have particularly patients who maybe have been at least all their life and I've heard a lot of you know discussion about the weight but I think when you put it in the context of the pregnancy based based basing that con that discussion that there a risk associated with a B C this is why I'm talking to you about it I think patients receive it well we try to be really sensitive to the issue because there again there's a lot of people are very sensitive about their weight but it's important because that allows us to take care of me driving problems if we use the context of the obesity epidemic we know that obese women are to increased risk of all pretty much all perinatal outcomes when we think about preterm labor yes when we think about risk of cesarean section yes we think about the risk of should we call shoulder dystocia show difficult vaginal delivery yes and think about preeclampsia yes we think about gestational diabetes if they don't have diabetes going into the pregnancy all these things are increasing the abuse of obese pregnant population so you know we try to start some interventions when ladies present to us we love it when they come free conceptually so we can actually start working on things that they actually can continue during the pregnancy and those things that I'm thinking about our dietary modification exercise modification again in the context yes you're going to be pregnant at some point so let's start something you can actually continue doing the pregnancy I'm a big advocate of exercise in general all the big sports enthusiasts you know I'm growing up and try to be a little bit now and it no reason why I can't be continued during the pregnancy so I just think education of the woman of the reproductive age a woman lends itself a long way in terms of pregnancy

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